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Oregon going after lapsed boaters

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The Oregon State Marine Board, 32 county sheriff’s offices and the state police will be on the state’s waterways this Saturday and Sunday looking for expired boat registrations as part of an initiative called Operation Ship Shape.

“We want boaters to look at their boat’s decals, the registration numbers, and their registration card to make sure they’re up-to-date,” Randy Henry, boating safety program manager for the marine board, said in a statement.

The board is funded by registration and title fees as well as marine fuel taxes. The funds go back to boaters in the form of launch ramps, docks, trailer parking spaces, restrooms, maintenance and boating-safety and marine-law enforcement. No money from the state lottery, the general fund or local facility parking fees goes toward funding marine programs, said Henry.

Per Oregon law, any boat powered by a motor, electric, gas, diesel or steam and all sailboats 12 feet and longer, must be registered. “Each boat registration brings in additional funds from motorboat fuel tax and federal boating dollars,” said Henry. “Registering a 16-foot boat provides $77 of funding, but results in additional matching funds of nearly $190, so that $77 registration fee results in $267 of revenue to fund facilities and marine enforcement.”

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